BENGALURU : Recently, the world observed the 90th anniversary of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh, who sacrificed his life at the age of 23. This brought back memories of the many sacrifices of our freedom fighters. Kannada short film Mahaan Hutatma is a tribute to the Indian Army and these freedom fighters. The movie is being privately screened on April 3, at Kalavidara Sangha, Chamrajpet. The movie stars actors like Pranayaraja Srinath Akshay, Akshay Chandrashekar, and Adhvithi Shetty to name a few.
With a special mention at the 66th National Film Awards in the non-feature category, Mahaan Hutatma has become the first Kannada movie in the same category to bag a winning spot. It’s been more than two years of wait for the release of the film. But what took so long? Sagar Puranik, director of the movie, says it’s a big-budget movie and they wanted to recover the amount before releasing the movie. “We’ve spent close to `20 lakh on the film, which is probably one of the most expensive projects in the industry. We wanted to recover at least half of the cost and then release the film,” says Puranik, adding that they were also looking for sponsors or grants but due to the pandemic, the release date delayed further.
Since it is a period film, special attention was taken about the location where it was shot. “Most of the visuals were shot in and around Bengaluru, like Malleswaram, to give that pre-Independence look. Some of the Indian border scenes were shot in the Turahalli forest, for which we took special permission from the forest department,” says the 28-year-old director, who is soon going to be out with his feature film.
The movie, which was an official selection in film festivals like Hollywood Silver Screen Festival, Los Angeles, Lake City International Film Festival, New Delhi to name a few, also got a special mention at the Dadasaheb Phalke International Film Festival 2020. Puranik has been garnering praises from movie industry insiders like Tharun Sudhir, director of latest blockbuster Darshan-starrer Roberrt.
However, Puranik is waiting for ‘honest feedback’ from people once it releases on the OTT platform. “We did a screening for the students of IFIM Business School and by the end of the film, most of them had tears in their eyes. These reactions are more precious to me than any awards,” says Puranik, adding that on April 3, he will announce the OTT platform that the movie will to be released on.